When Jim Hayes was looking for a new job back in 2000, he knew he wanted to work for a smaller, privately owned company. He got exactly what he wanted when he joined von Drehle – a family atmosphere that thrives on communication.
As our Regional Sales Manager for Tennessee, Alabama and parts of Mississippi and Georgia, Jim appreciates the personal environment we’ve cultivated here at von Drehle. “There’s more concern from ownership versus just being a number. They want you to feel part of the family,” he says.
Jim also wanted a collaborative atmosphere where team members and their input were valued. “With big corporations, it’s their way and that’s it,” he explains. “At von Drehle, even if you have a disagreement about something, you can talk through it and they will listen without holding it against you. I’m also allowed to grow my businesses without someone constantly looking over my shoulder and micromanaging.”
That’s easy to do with someone like Jim, who sets high expectations for himself. Explaining his work mantra, he says “You gotta show up and be there, even when things aren’t going the best. You gotta keep pushing.” Jim contributes his success to this drive to keep his expectations higher than the competition and knowing that building deep relationships is the key to keeping customers satisfied.
That drive coupled with flexibility and communication has help pull Jim and all of us through the coronavirus pandemic. When asked about the last year, Jim says “Even though there were challenges, we are getting through them. The inside team and customer service work together to communicate things we can do for our customers, and we have an open dialogue with them.” The personal relationships Jim has nurtured over the years have helped — “Our customers are understanding because we keep communication channels open. We don’t surprise them. We’ve been totally upfront and honest with them.”
Our most foundational value here at von Drehle is integrity. We like to say “Integrity is our most important asset,” and we live that by being committed to providing trust, honesty and transparency to both our customers and our work family. It’s what has helped us overcome challenges over the last year and what guides all of our work going forward, and Jim exemplifies that.